- Auschwitz 1
- The first transport of Polish political
prisoner deportees arrived in Auschwitz, June 14, 1940.
This is the date considered as the date
when it began to function. The name of the
city of Oswiecim was also changed to
- The camp was expanded
over the next 5 years and consisted of three main parts:
Auschwitz I, Auschwitz II-Birkenau, and Auschwitz III-Monowitz. It also
had over 40 sub-camps.
- The Poles were the
first to be imprisoned and all died in
the camp. Next came the Soviet prisoners of
war followed by Gypsies, and prisoners of
other nationalities were also incarcerated there. By
1942, the camp had become the site of
the greatest mass murder in the history of humanity, which was committed
against the European Jews as part of Hitler's plan for the complete
destruction of that race.
- The majority of the Jews deported to
Auschwitz were sent to their deaths in the Auschwitz
II Birkenau gas chambers immediately
- The Camp Commandant Rudolf Höss,
testified at the Nuremberg Trials that up to 2.5 million people
had died at Auschwitz, about 90 percent of
them Jews from almost every country in Europe.
Most of them
were killed in gas chambers using Zyklon-B; while
other deaths were caused by starvation, forced labour,
and disease. Not to mention
individual executions, and the so-called
medical experiments carried out by the Angel of Death
- The infamous gate of Auschwitz
"Work Makes You Free"
- The camp's prisoners who left the camp during the day for
construction or farm labour were made to march through the gate to the
sounds of an orchestra.
- Auschwitz I was built on the basis of an
old Polish brick army barracks originally built by the Austro-Hungarian
- It served as the administrative centre for
the whole complex.
- Block 13 of Auschwitz was the
"prison within the prison", This is where prisoners
were put into "standing-cells". These
were cells about 1.5 metres square,
four men would be placed in them at a time.
The space as so small all they could do was stand.
The following day they were forced
to work with the other prisoners, then back in the
standing cell at night . The basement
located the "starvation cells"; prisoners locked up
here were given no food or water until they
were dead. Also in the basement were the "dark cells"; these cells had
only a very tiny window, and a solid door. Prisoners placed in these
cells would gradually suffocate as they used up all of the oxygen in the
air; sometimes the SS would light a candle in the cell to use up the
oxygen more quickly.
- Many were subjected to hanging with their hands behind their backs,
thus dislocating their shoulder joints for hours, even days.
- Some suffered a more lingering death by
being suspended from hooks set in two wooden posts.
- The execution yard is between blocks 10 and 11. In this area,
prisoners who were thought to merit individual execution received it.
Some were shot, against a reinforced wall which still exists
n September 1941, the SS conducted poison gas tests in
block 11, killing 850 Poles and Soviets using cyanide. The first
experiment took place on 3 September
killed 600 Soviet POWs. The
substance producing the highly lethal cyanide gas was sold under the
trade name Zyklon B, originally for use as a pesticide used to kill
lice. The tests were deemed successful, and a gas chamber and
crematorium were constructed by converting a bunker. This gas chamber
operated from 1941 to 1942, during which time some 60,000 people were
killed therein; it was then converted into an air-raid shelter for the
use of the SS.
The first women arrived in the camp on March 26, 1942.
From April 1943 to May 1944, the gynecologist ProF. Dr.
Carl Clauberg conducted sterilization experiments on Jewish women in
block 10 of Auschwitz I, with the aim of developing a simple injection
method to be used on the Slavic people. These experiments consisted
largely of determining the effects of the injection of caustic chemicals
into the uterus. This was extremely painful and many died during and
shortly after. Dr.
Josef Mengele, who is well known for his experiments on twins and
dwarfs in the same complex, was the camp "doctor". He regularly
performed gruesome experiments such as castration without anaesthetics.
Prisoners in the camp hospital who were not quick to recover were
regularly killed by a lethal injection of phenol.
- Some finds from Auschwitz Camp
NOTE THESE WERE FOUND IN THE LATE 1960's BEFORE THE CAMP BECAME A LISTED
Well That's the end of another crazy adventure.
Contact us if you have an idea for a search or an adventure.